Calling for Blood

The opinion pages of the major news outlets today are filled with op-eds, the gist of which is that the only thing wrong with the illegal, immoral, and counter-productive attacks on Syria of late last week is that they weren’t nearly damaging enough and there should be many more of them. I won’t even both to link to them or name their authors. They are mostly from the same people who have been urging us to war for the last two decades. We have very little to show from taking their advice than dead or permanently wounded Americans and the vast number of dead in a dozen countries in the Middle East, North Africa, and West Asia. This is supposed to cultivate friends, increase our credibility, and make us more secure. It has done none of those things.

In any rational society the consistent wrongness of these opinion writers would make them objects of scorn and yet they continue to receive some of the most precious column inches in the world on a routine basis.

3 comments… add one
  • bob sykes

    Last week’s raids look like a Parthian shot.

    Assad is slowly completing his consolidation of power west and south of the Euphrates, and soon only the Israeli and Turkish enclaves will be left. The Kurds bet on the US and lost. They have no friends, and will have to reconcile with Assad. The price will be Kurdish disarmament and Syrian control of the Turkish border, but the payback will be some limited autonomy. Turkey will like the deal and withdraw from Syria. When that deal is done, we will be forced out of Syria.

    A similar agreement between the Iraqi Kurds and Baghdad will follow, and we will be out of Iraq, too. Turkey will leave Iraq, too.

    The big winner is Iran. They now have allies ensconced in Baghdad, Damascus and Beirut, and they have their Shia corridor to the Mediterranean.

    Russia is another winner. They now have more friends and influence in the Middle East than at any other time in their entire history: Iran, Turkey, Iraq, Syria, Egypt. They are also on good terms with Saudi Arabia, and are coordinating oil trade with them and OPEC.

    A big loser is the US. We now have fewer friends and allies in the Middle East than at any other time. We are left with the odd couple Israel and Saudi Arabia.

    Israel’s strategic position is considerably weakened, despite the rapprochement with Saudi Arabia.

    Jordan, the invisible kingdom, is in trouble, surrounded by hostiles.

    Has the US ever conducted a more disastrous military adventure in its entire history than the invasions of Iraq, Syria and Afghanistan? Maybe participation in WW I?

  • Prior to 1967 the U. S. had a pretty good rep in MENA. We had adopted a simple but effective strategy: butt out. Similar to the Chinese now. We threw whatever goodwill we had away by becoming Israel’s primary international patron after the Six Day War (prior to that it had been France).

  • Roy Lofquist

    “Washington (CNN)President Donald Trump’s morning declaration that “nice and new and ‘smart'” missiles would soon be fired toward Syria caught most of his aides off guard and came before an agreement had been reached between key US allies, multiple American and Western officials said on Wednesday.”

    https://www.cnn.com/2018/04/11/politics/donald-trump-syria-tweets/index.html

    The strike was about much more than just the chemicals. It demonstrated that the much vaunted Russian air defense (S-300, S-400) is totally ineffective. This will give Russia, Iran and NOKO a lot to ponder.

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